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Probably the most dangerous activity we undertake is breathing

04.10.2006
“Probably the most dangerous activity we undertake is breathing,” says David Bender in the latest Biochemist.

The magazine looks at diet and metabolism, with David writing on the paradox of antioxidants, Susan Ozanne on “Are we what our mothers ate?”, Allan Sniderman on how we are eating ourselves to death and Alan Crozier on what happens when you drink coffee. Jason Gill explains how you can walk off lunch, and Eric Newsholme explains the biochemistry of fatigue.

The main features are:

Are we what our mothers ate?
By N H Smith and S E Ozanne
The influence diet has on our health is well known but what if the decisions are already made? What if we are already destined to be fat or thin, or more prone to disease? There is growing evidence that what our mothers ate during pregnancy may have a major impact on our health during adulthood.
The antioxidant paradox
By David A Bender
At the molecular level there are sound theories to explain how radical damage can lead to cancer and coronary heart disease, and how antioxidants may provide protection. However, the results of intervention trials of vitamin E and ß-carotene have been, at best, disappointing; indeed many trials have shown increased death among people taking supposedly protective antioxidant supplements. This is the antioxidant paradox.
Eating yourself to death
By Allan D. Sniderman
ApoB equals the total number of atherogenic lipoprotein particles in plasma. Since trapping of these particles within the arterial wall is fundamental to the pathogenesis of vascular disease, understanding the metabolic determinants of plasma apoB is fundamental to understanding the risks and therapy of vascular disease.
Walking off lunch
By Jason M. R. Gill
Free-living humans consume meals at frequent intervals and consequentially spend about three-quarters of each day in the postprandial state. During this time a number metabolic perturbations occur which are likely to play a role in the atherosclerotic disease process.
The cup that cheers
By Alan Crozier and Hiroshi Ashihara
Caffeine is a key component of many popular drinks. Researchers have elucidated the caffeine biosynthetic pathway, cloned several of the genes encoding key N-methyltransferases and produced transgenic coffee plants with a reduced caffeine content.

Mark Burgess | alfa
Further information:
http://www.biochemist.org/bio/

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